Don Omar, an artist who in the past few years has been defined by his hit singles, and Jenni Rivera, an artist whose chart success was driven by album sales, were the top winners at the 2013 Billboard Latin Music Awards, presented by State Farm. Don Omar, who performed his current hit, “Zumba,” had garnered 18 finalist nods–tying a record set by Tito “El Bambino” in 2010–and took home 10 of those awards. They included songs artist of the year; male and airplay song of the year for “Dutty Love,” featuring Natty Natasha; and streaming artist of the year.
Rivera, who was a strong chart presence before her death last December, experienced a sales spike in the wake of her passing and won six awards, including regional Mexican album of the year for “La Gran Senora” (released the week after her death) and artist of the year. Prince Royce, the young urban/bachata singer who has dominated the charts since his debut in 2011, won four awards, including albums artist of the year, male. Romeo Santos, Shakira and La Arrolladora Banda el Limon de Rene Camacho won three awards each, as did Natasha.
3BallMTY, the DJ collective from Mexico that popularized the “tribal guarachero” movement, won artist of the year, new while the joint bill of Enrique Iglesias and Jennifer Lopez won tour of the year.
This year’s awards, broadcast live on Telemundo from the BankUnited Center in Miami, featured a series of premiere performances, including Carlos Vives with Michel Telo (who won song of the year for his global hit “Ai Se Eu Te Pego”), Marc Anthony debuting his new single and Santos and Juan Luis Guerra performing “Frio Frio.”
The awards themselves reflected a more diverse musical offering than the past two years. While uptempo dance fare and bachata still dominate Latin music, there were glimpses of new artists and different genres among the finalists, including classical crossover trio Il Volo, which performed an homage to Mexican crooner Jose Jose, who received Billboard’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
Mexican rock band Mana, which won albums artist of the year, duo or group, and Latin pop albums artist of the year, duo or group, also received Billboard’s Spirit of Hope Award for the philanthropic work of the group’s Selva Negra Foundation, which has worked on environmental causes for nearly 20 years.
Label and publisher awards were handed out during the Billboard Bash, which took place April 23 at the Cameo Theatre. Universal Music Latin Entertainment swept with seven awards, including Latin airplay and top Latin albums label of the year, while Sony Music Latin took home five, including Latin pop airplay album and imprint of the year.
In addition, UMLE imprint Machete won Latin rhythm airplay and Latin rhythm albums label of the year. Regional Mexican label Disa won Latin airplay imprint and regional Mexican airplay imprint of the year, and Fonovisa won regional Mexican albums and top Latin albums imprint of the year. Indie Top Stop Music picked up the award for tropical songs airplay imprint of the year.
The Billboard Latin Music Awards honor the most popular albums, songs and performers in Latin music, as determined by the actual sales, radio airplay, streaming and social data that informs Billboard’s weekly charts.